W4AN Memorial Trust Fund
Dear Scott, Paul, Chad and Mike,
WOW - this is completely unbelievable! I had no intention nor expectation of winning this raffle, I really just wanted to help out the kids. Coincidentally, however, I used an IC-756PROII at W2XL last fall for Sweepstakes Phone and totally fell in love with it. I have wanted one ever since; but until now, getting one was totally out of reach for me.
This is a bittersweet moment, because the only reason for this raffle was for all of us to get together and try to put as big a band-aid as possible on a wound the size of the world in the hearts of two precious young boys who were struck by the worst imaginable tragedy. Owning this radio for the rest of my life will provide a constant daily reminder of the fragility of this supreme blessing we call the gift life, a gift that we can so easily start to take for granted until we are slapped in the face by the shocking yet inevitable reality of its impermanence. I am honored and thrilled to be entrusted with the "W4AN Memorial Radio", and will endeavor to make sure it lives up to its namesake and heritage, to the best of my abilities (though they are a far cry from Bill's.)
Thanks so much to you four for creatively creating this benefit event in order to raise a very sizable chunk of money for Graeme and Erik. Being fond of easy, round numbers, I would like you to let me know how much additional funds are needed to make it an even $20,000, and I will make an additional donation in that exact amount.
I'd also like to extend a huge thanks to Icom America, Tennadyne, Array Solutions, Bencher, Idiom Press, N7LYY, Comtek Systems, SuperQSL.com, Heil Sound, Lance Johnson Engineering, N4QA, Solder-It, The Mast Company, DX4WIN, Octavia QSLs, Cheapham.com, Unified Microsystems/W9XT, K1JEK, KG4's YJR & YJQ, QTH.com, Neutek USA, TR Log, DWM Communications, ProLog - Datamatrix, Harbach Electronics, Amateur Radio Companion, ManualMan, K9LU Amateur Radio Products, and K7BON for making this an amazing success. Each of you should know that there were hams who bought tickets because they wanted to help Graeme and Erik, but they also wanted to win YOUR prize. Not only that, but we will all remember you and your generosity next time we are shopping for what you offer.
In much the same fashion as for a civil defense emergency, hams have once again shown that we can organize and come together quickly, elegantly, and successfully in a time of need, even when that need might involve helping people we don't even know. We touch the lives of others in such a meaningful and lasting way - it always makes me so proud to be a ham.
Very 73 all,